By KEVIN TAN
IF it wasn’t for his late brother, Kavin Jayaram (better known as Kavin Jay) would have never taken the first step towards becoming the successful comedian he is today.
For years, his brother had encouraged him to try out stand-up comedy but it wasn’t until his death several years ago that Kavin decided to give it a shot.
“My brother used to tell me that I’m always funny and he always wanted me to go on stage. But I never really got myself to do it.” said Kavin, 32, who is a marine engineer by day.
“If not now, when?” he asked himself back then. “I realised that life is too short to save (something for) tomorrow.” It wasn’t an easy road, however, as his first attempt was a total letdown.
In 2006, Kavin gathered 150 of his friends and invited his cousin, Andrew Netto, one of Malaysia’s most popular stand-up comedians, to put on a show. That was Kavin’s very first performance in front of a live audience. “My cousin did really well, and I didn’t. It was my first time and I didn’t know what I was doing,” Kavin said. “It was so bad.”
Although the audience kept congratulating him for an excellent show that night, Kavin knew they were just being polite. “That’s why I did it (stand-up comedy) again because I wanted the audience to come back and say the same things about my performance – but to actually mean what they say.” And that’s how Kavin started his journey in the world of comedy.
“I learned that comedy has its own science,” he said. “The reason people laugh is not because of what you said, but how you said it. You have to learn to just be yourself.”
As Kavin slowly improved his stand-up act, people started to take notice. “People were coming up to me and complimenting my show, and this time I could tell they meant it! I started getting hired for more shows too.”
But according to Kavin, his big break was getting to be the opening act for Irish comedian Dave Callan at Comedy Club Kuala Lumpur. It was a major stepping stone for Kavin, who has since become a regular performer at the venue.
Just last year, Kavin formed his own comedy group, Goodflers, with fellow funny men Jason Leong and Rizal Van Geyzel. The Goodflers organised their own sold-out tour around the Klang Valley, and received glowing reviews.
“Again, my comedy career went up another notch. We knew we could grow as comedians in the industry as individuals, but we decided to form Goodflers because we’d rather grow as a group. It’s a lot more fun when it’s done together,” said Kavin.
Watch a video of Kavin Jay’s hillarious performance right after the jump!